Sunday, April 28, 2019

NightShadow: A Vampire's Chronicle – review

Director: Jess Solis

Release Date: 2019

Contains spoilers

Coming in at 50 minutes I might have looked at this “anthology” as a short film but felt compelled to review it – Just to warn you, I guess.

The film doesn’t have (at the time of writing) an IMDb page but, on the Amazon on Demand page we get the following blurb: “A collection of short films from the early age of cinema to the modern day, weaving a tale of the legendary vampire, Dracula.” Inaccurate due to the first film included, as we will see…

Le Manoir du Diable
So, the first film is Georges Méliès’ Le Manoir du Diable and here we have a few points. Whilst there are tropes within the 1896 film that would become common with the vampire genre it was not a vampire film. Also, being released a year before the Novel, it is quite simply not a tale of Dracula. The resolution is horribly low and I suspect this was simply ripped off a YouTube upload.

Jess Solis’ Dracula
The film then goes into “Jess Solis’ Dracula”, a black and white ponderous pseudo-arthouse piece that at one point has a faux-Lugosi voiceover reading a passage from Dracula but the passage narrated is a Van Helsing dialogue. The filming is not great and clearly had little to no budget – the saving grace is it is soon gone and replaced with…

Well the rest of the film is Nosferatu, eine Symphonie des Grauens although the film confesses it is an abridged version. There is some narration added (that reads from the same passage as the narration I mentioned in the previous segment) but the film starts at the inn (so we miss all the opening scenes) and the print used is blooming awful. That said, whilst this didn’t abuse the film as some rejigs have, for the life of me I cannot understand why you’d watch this when the Kino remaster of the film is available.

Simply a way of cashing in on the popularity of VoD. 0 out of 10 for this vehicle (of course Nosferatu, even abridged and poorly printed, is worth more but the score is for the vehicle and concept).

At the time of writing there is no IMDb page.

On Demand @ Amazon US

On Demand @ Amazon UK


Octobercynic said...

Yes, I got suckered into this one on Amazon US. The trailer was just vague enough to pique an interest. Not the first time I have been conned, but certainly the most frustrating, given the materials (especially the quality of the materials) the "auteur" had to work with. I leave all involved to the ravages of karma.

Taliesin_ttlg said...

Indeed Octobercynic, indeed